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Lunar apatite with terrestrial volatile abundances.

Authors
  • Boyce, Jeremy W
  • Liu, Yang
  • Rossman, George R
  • Guan, Yunbin
  • Eiler, John M
  • Stolper, Edward M
  • Taylor, Lawrence A
Type
Published Article
Journal
Nature
Publisher
Springer Nature
Publication Date
Jul 22, 2010
Volume
466
Issue
7305
Pages
466–469
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1038/nature09274
PMID: 20651686
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The Moon is thought to be depleted relative to the Earth in volatile elements such as H, Cl and the alkalis. Nevertheless, evidence for lunar explosive volcanism has been used to infer that some lunar magmas exsolved a CO-rich and CO(2)-rich vapour phase before or during eruption. Although there is also evidence for other volatile species on glass spherules, until recently there had been no unambiguous reports of indigenous H in lunar rocks. Here we report quantitative ion microprobe measurements of late-stage apatite from lunar basalt 14053 that document concentrations of H, Cl and S that are indistinguishable from apatites in common terrestrial igneous rocks. These volatile contents could reflect post-magmatic metamorphic volatile addition or growth from a late-stage, interstitial, sulphide-saturated melt that contained approximately 1,600 parts per million H(2)O and approximately 3,500 parts per million Cl. Both metamorphic and igneous models of apatite formation suggest a volatile inventory for at least some lunar materials that is similar to comparable terrestrial materials. One possible implication is that portions of the lunar mantle or crust are more volatile-rich than previously thought.

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